Thursday, May 5, 2016

The arguments in support of marriage discrimination worked so great here - why not export them to Australia?

Pat Langrell claims to be with Marriage Equals which seems to be the activist arm of the Catholic Church in Australia dedicated to banning same-sex marriage. He claims responsibility for the inane video, above. It is hard to have a firm grasp on all of the sundry bullshit plopped on us from the Church but that video looks like something I have seen before. Their talking point Q&A also has a certain familiar ring to it. For example:

My marriage won’t affect your marriage?

Changing the definition of marriage will impact future generations, because the Government will no longer see the link between children and their biological parents as important.
The answer goes on quite verbosely touching on no-fault divorce and the usual irrelevant BS. And;

Children of same-sex couples do just the same, if not better, than children of heterosexual couples?

There are studies which report that children of same sex couples do just as well, if not better, than children of heterosexual couples. There are also studies which say the exact opposite.
This one also goes on and on without mentioning the name Regnerus. There is one study (not studies), funded indirectly by the Church, that purports to say the exact opposite. It has been thoroughly discredited. This is also misdirection. Same-sex parenting and same-sex marriage are two separate issues. The Church uses parenting to muddy the waters.

The corollary question pertains to children who are already in the care of same-sex parents. Are those kids better off or worse off if their parents are married? I don't know anything about Australian family law. In the US, one judge at the federal appeals court level noted that denying gay couples the right to marry was akin to intentionally disadvantaging their children. So who really cares about kids? The Church is run by men who have never raised children. What special erudition do they have in social science?

Marriage equality in Australia depends upon where you live but lacks federal approval. The Church has beaten back 16 efforts to amend the country's marriage laws. A national referendum might occur this year.

The bottom line to all of this:

Worldwide there is a significant amount of experience with same-sex marriage. The Catholic Church's parade of horribles has yet to visit any of those countries or regions. Here in the United States we have enjoyed marriage equality in the state of Massachusetts ( since May, 2004. That is 12 years of experience. The Church's allies have posted innumerable polemics and filed an unimaginable number of legal briefs. I have yet to see an argument in opposition to marriage equality that begins with the words “In Massachusetts, … .” The divorce rate has remained the same and children raised by gay couples are doing just fine. Thank you very much.

In point of fact, I have yet to entertain a coherent argument supporting the notion that same-sex marriage affects anyone other than the betrothed and their children (if any). I do not know why the Catholic Church is so opposed to marriage equality nor do I care. The Church should be content for adherents to obey its teachings. They have no right to interfere in any state's lawmaking.  That ended in the 18th century.

Sometimes we are too polite. After all, it is the Catholic Church. I am content to tell the eunuchs at the Vatican to worry more about the sexual misadventures of their priests and less about the legal status of the unions of consenting adults.

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